Thursday, June 26, 2008

Digital Audio Recordings of US Court Proceedings Online

Five U.S. federal courts have been participating in a pilot project since last summer to make digital audio recordings of their proceedings publicly available online, according to an article in the June 2008 edition of Third Branch, a newsletter of the U.S. federal courts administration.

The 5 courts are:
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Eastern District of North Carolina
  • U.S. District Court in Nebraska
  • Eastern District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Maine
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Alabama

According to the article:

"The audio files are accessible through the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) system. Some 840,000 subscribers use PACER to access docket and case information from federal appellate, district, and bankruptcy courts."

"Access to the recorded proceeding is through a one-page PDF document on the court’s docket. During the life of the pilot project—expected to last through 2008—the cost, regardless of the proceeding’s duration, is eight cents to download the entire audio file. "


"One goal of the pilot project is to determine the level of public interest. Early indications suggest there is substantial interest. A second goal is to determine an appropriate charge, based on demands on court staff and technological investments to provide adequate bandwidth."

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 1:06 pm


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